Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Just Say No

This sentiment is prevalent at Mahmood’s Den where today he respectfully asks His Highness Sheikh Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa to allow more economic mobility and freedom for the Shia in Bahrain, specifically to allow them to serve in the military.
The crown prince of course is one of the top leaders of the country, and it is in his power to change things for the better. Everyone loves him and now has gained an international reputation as a moderate and a statesman. So i hope I will not cross the line by advising him - as a friend - that he should immediately implement policies to those organisations he oversees which will translate all of his excellent positions as articulated in this and other interviews and open the gates of employment to the Shi’a into the armed forces.
Not everyone agrees, especially commenter riffa4u:
try also walkiing and working in the economy . leave your iran based dreams aside also after what happened in iran in 1986 kaaba attack and 1987 the arms cache siezed in from the passengers coming from iran for haj also dont blame the government of bahrain for this as iran once held a claim on bahrain and bahrain has a high number of irani bahrainis , who in the past have also contributed the most towards dystroying the peace in the country and presently do so , if the government does trust then are you ready to respond or will continue to burn and cry
are u trying to say that the shias in bahrain dont bow to iran or in the future will not run on iran orders god sake dont say no i know if these people get ever chance they have tried in the past and are going to do in the future thats why u cannot get job in bahrain military or police or in key positions for your ill acts supporting iran based demands
Emphasis mine. This Shia hysteria has at its roots the situation in Iraq (see, it’s Bush’s fault), at least that is the impression I get from this article by Faud Ajami. An excerpt:
In the fullness of time, the Arab order of power will have to come to a grudging acceptance of the order sure to take hold in Baghdad. This is a region that respects the prerogatives of power. It had once resisted the coming to power of the Alawites in Syria and then learned to accommodate that "heretical" minority sect and its conquest of Damascus; the Shia path in Iraq will follow that trajectory, and its justice is infinitely greater for it is the ascendancy of a demographic majority, through the weight of numbers and the ballot box. Of all Arab lands, Iraq is the most checkered, a frontier country at the crossroads of Arabia, Turkey and Persia. The Sunni Arabs in Iraq and beyond have never accepted the diversity of that land. The "Arabism" of the place was synonymous with their own primacy. Now a binational state in all but name (Arab and Kurdish) has come into being in Iraq, and the Shia underclass have stepped forth and staked a claim commensurate with the weight of their numbers. The Sunni Arabs have recoiled from this change in their fortunes. They have all but "Persianized" the Shia of Iraq, branded them as a fifth column of the state next door. Contemporary Islamism has sharpened this feud, for to the Sunni Islamists the Shia are heretics at odds with the forbidding strictures of the Islamists' fanatical variant of the faith.
Read the whole thing. I myself have bought into this idea that Shia = Iran, if only because in Sadr’s case I believe it’s true. Follow the money. This does not mean that if Sadr gains control of Iraq he will be a puppet of the Mullahs, but rather he will be very beholden to Iran, dependent on Iran, and scarred of Iran. He will therefore be very slow to distance himself from Tehran to the detriment of Iraq and the US. That does not mean all Shia take their orders from the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, not even in Iran, but those with substantial monetary connections to Iran can be assumed to be heavily influenced by Iran. I doubt this is the case in Bahrain. What I find ironic is that the US has empowered the Shia in Iraq yet I believe far more Shia are killing our troops than Sunni.

1 comment:

Jungle Mom said...

Just a thought, and I realize this is a big simplification of the situation,but after living and working among a tribal people, granted , much less civilized(?), I see so many of the problems of the middle east are just that they are TRIBES. It is a matter of family pride.
Some tribes here are compelled to defend their ancestors memeories, as long as the offense is remembered.